EquityZen Knowledge Center

EquityZen has curated this list of quality resources for secondary investors, shareholders and company representatives.
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2019 IPO Outlook — A Bellwether Year for the New Tech Elite?

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Adam Augusiak-Boro   November 15, 2018

As the bull market charged into its ninth year in 2018, with the FAANG tech giants (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Alphabet’s Google) leading U.S. equities markets to record highs, many of us thought we would have seen stronger IPO activity. However, with under two months left of 2018 and despite favorable market conditions, this year’s U.S. IPO count is still nearly 100 IPOs lower than 2014’s total of 275 priced IPOs. At EquityZen, we continue to believe that IPO volume will remain subdued compared to prior bull markets given the secular trends we see in the U.S. capital markets.


Our team at EquityZen took a closer look at the companies we believe are primed to go public in 2019. To read our full 2019 IPO Outlook, please click here.
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SoftBank: Vision or Delusion?

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Adam Augusiak-Boro   August 23, 2018

On October 14, 2016, SoftBank shocked the world with the announcement of its $100 billion Vision Fund, which would focus on investing in late-stage technology companies. Within 7 months of the announcement, SoftBank had already cemented $93 billion in commitments and has since closed on the entire $100 billion amount.  Now, as SoftBank begins to deploy capital from the fund, we believe it faces a colossal undertaking in delivering competitive returns to its investors, which include tech titans like Apple and Qualcomm, as well as the Saudi and Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth funds.





Assuming an internal rate of return (“IRR”) of 20%, which is quite modest by VC standards, our research team estimates that SoftBank will have to generate over $142 billion in cash for the Vision Fund, which is approximately what Amazon was worth 16 years after its IPO. We further argue that, to compensate for the riskiness of SoftBank’s underlying investments, its investors are likely expecting returns of at least 30 to 40%, or a confounding $35 to $55 billion of cash generated per year in the second half of the fund’s life.  This would be the equivalent of spitting out an eBay-to-Tesla-sized company every year at current market prices.

“Masa’s ability to raise money is staggering,” according to Atish Davda, EquityZen CEO and Co-Founder. “SoftBank cemented $93 billion in only 7 months for its Vision Fund.  Compare that to the entire U.S. venture industry that took over 3 years starting in 2014 to cross $100 billion raised. The real question for Masa now is whether he’ll be able to generate competitive equity returns, especially following the mega rounds SoftBank is leading at seemingly frothy valuations.”

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Uber's Growth Strategy: Jobs! (Interactive Graphic)

UberInvestorStartup Compensation

Phil Haslett   August 29, 2014

In June, Uber confirmed raising $1.2 BILLION from Fidelity and a number of other mutual funds.

But what's the company spending all that money on? Turns out, a lot is going towards hiring: 400+ people on 5 continents (Operations in Bulgaria? Check.) EquityZen's Charlie Zhou put together this interactive graphic to visualize Uber's global expansion.

A couple other notes about Uber's hiring ramp-up:


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